The planning for my 2020 pepper season actually started a couple of months ago, shortly after this past grow year was wrapped up. It’s hard not to get dreaming of the possibilities and, as a result, I started amassing new varieties and variations of peppers that piqued my interest while searching around online, but more on that shortly. And with that in mind, let’s get this annual – sharing my way to early plans for the upcoming season – tradition rolling.

After the end of this past season, I had decided to scale things back a bit more with plans to forgo using an allotted overflow spot at the local community gardens. It has served me quite well the past two years, but I just have way too many harvested fruit stacked in my freezer. I’m not a commercial grower by any means, and certainly could do with less time set aside to manage multiple locations. And 34 plants will still probably be too much, but we’re going for it anyways.

seed packets

And with the plethora of seed options I’ve collected over the past couple of years, this year is going to be challenging without having to juggle the two grow spots. Looking at my spreadsheet of seed inventory – yes, I’m a nerd – I’ve got 117 varieties/variations to select from. Combine that with the smaller area for growing and you can imagine the many late nights over the past couple of weeks while I select, second guess and select again those seeds that I wanted to start for 2020.

The Initial 2020 Grow List

And so it is after much deliberation and hand-wringing that I’ve finally come up with the following list of seeds that I plan to sow come late February of next year.

  • Bhut Jolokia – Orange Copenhagen
  • Bhut Jolokia x Paxio Neyde
  • Bih Jolokia
  • Bih Jolokia Caramel
  • Bih Jolokia x Sugar Rush Peach
  • Bonda Ma Jacques – Red
  • Bonda Ma Jacques – Yellow
  • Caramel Scorponero
  • Chocolate Bhutlah DM
  • Chocolate Butch T
  • Chocolate Ghost Jami
  • Chocolate Reaper
  • Devil’s Brain
  • Elysium Oxide Scotch Bonnet
  • Fatalii x Brainstrain Yellow
  • Ghor-Pion / Gorpion
  • Hatch Green Chile (x2)
  • Jalapeno – Craig’s Grande (x2)
  • Jalapeno – Lemon Spice
  • Jonah Yellow Brainstrain
  • Kraken Scorpion
  • Melon Rocoto
  • Mini Olive Rocoto (still on its way)
  • Moruga Satan
  • Murupi Yellow
  • Naga Morich
  • Orange Monzano
  • Paxio Neyde
  • Pimenta Puma
  • Scorpion – Chocolate
  • Yellow Dorset Naga
  • Yellow Nagabrain
  • Yellow Reaper

The next couple of grow seasons are going to be all about variety. So much so, in fact, that of the varieties shown above, I have only grown two of them prior. The wife requested the Hatch Green Chiles and you can’t go wrong with a solid Jalapeno variation like Craig’s Grande.

Also, with the above list, I have specifically selected those plants that provide a wide range of diverse colors: chocolate, red, yellow, olive, caramel, purple, black… you get the picture. I’m hoping each harvest will look like a hellish rainbow kaleidoscope of fire. I’m even going to have a full raised bed of just chocolate peppers aptly and lovingly dubbed “Wonka’s Nightmare.”

Now, just like an plan, this one is most definitely, probably going to change some depending on the whims of my capsaicin-polluted mind and the germination rate of the selected seeds. With many of the hybrids listed above, their lineage is not 100% stable, so I’m not sure of how successful we’ll be early on in the season – or even if they will eventually turn out as described.

And that’s the great thing about this adventure we’re planning for. You never really know 100% what’s in store for you once the dirt starts flying.